Sunday, July 22, 2012

50 Years Is Enough!

A Note From John Judge - Director of COPA - Coalition on Political Assassinations 


Imagine the 50th anniversary of President Kennedy, November 22, 2013, at the Grassy Knoll passing without a word in the press about his assassination and who was behind it, only a celebration of his life. That is what Dallas authorities are planning now.

Every year, as you know, we hold a Moment of Silence on the Grassy Knoll at 12:30 pm on November 22 to commemorate the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and to keep alive the knowledge and outrage about the injustice of his intentionally unsolved political murder. After our event, which continues a tradition started in 1964 by researcher and journalist Penn Jones, Jr., we speak truth to power.

We invite the best researchers to our annual meetings to present the best new evidence in the major political assassinations of the last five decades, and we encourage them to speak briefly on the Grassy Knoll. Our event is not a circus or carnival atmosphere, it is not even “conspiracy theory,” as the press commentators try to dismiss it. It is an event lest we forget.

We will be there again this year, this time on Thanksgiving Day. We invite you to join us for the conference and for the event in Dallas, from November 22-25th. We will be staying and meeting at the Hotel Lawrence this year, as in the past.


Imagine, on the 50th anniversary, when the attention of the national and international press, the crowds who come to Dallas and Dealey Plaza and the world that will be watching, that there would be no Moment of Silence. We have been applying for the permit for the last three years in anticipation of a major conference and huge crowds, and have been told repeatedly that none could be issued more than a year in advance. To our surprise a permit was then issued for the whole area of Dealey Plaza for next year for a full week in November to the Sixth Floor Museum, without an event yet planned. This permit is also exclusive of other events at the site, which ours never was.

The director of the Sixth Floor Museum said she got the permit to be “proactive” on behalf of the Mayor’s office in Dallas, which then appointed a committee to plan “dignified” events to “celebrate the life of John F. Kennedy” that week. We have attempted to coordinate with the Sixth Floor Museum only to be told that we should “move the national and international press attention to [JFK’s] death to another moment.” That would be a trick, but we all know that it will be gone at any other moment. We are also trying to coordinate with the Mayor’s commission to exercise our right of free speech in a public park that belongs to history and the American people. We want to be there to be seen and heard, to be silent and loud. We don’t want to be in a “free speech zone” a mile away where no one will hear our message.

The Director of the Sixth Floor Museum, which gives a very imbalanced view of the evidence and the history of the assassination of JFK to millions of tourists each year, told the Dallas Morning News that they had no event planned but they might do a “moment of silence”. I would suggest that if they do such an event to the exclusion of ours, it would stretch into an eternity of silence regarding this assassination.

Penn Jones wrote four volumes on the evidence and strange witness deaths in the Kennedy assassination called Forgive My Grief. Forgive ours, but some things are not forgivable and should not be forgettable. We will be there on November 22, 2013 in any case. Hope you will be with us.


We also fight to release all classified records on these murders, now decades past. Our support for the JFK Assassination Records Collection Act and the Review Board it created has led to the release of over 6.5 million pages of classified records buried since 1964, but not all of them. We have joined the call by the Committee for an Open Archives and the Assassination Archives and Research Center to expedite the release of all related files on JFK’s assassination by the 50th anniversary next year, and not in 2017 or even later. All efforts to use FOIA, Mandatory Declassification Review or even Obama’s Executive Order calling for release of files classified for over 25 years to be implemented without review have failed so far. The new agencies, created by his administration to facilitate transparency and release, have decided that the JFK records are outside their mandate. 

An online petition to demand release can be found at

We continue to push for introduction of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. Records Act to release hundreds of thousands of pages of the House Select Committee on Assassinations investigation into his death, locked up since 1978 until 2028. All their files on JFK are already released. The Clerk of the House was approached to use her authority to release these records, but their office has declined saying it needs Congressional legislation. We have a new sponsor who seems ready to drop the bill and details will follow to get support.
Our website features speakers from past conferences as well as regular news updates about political assassinations, new evidence and witnesses, legal developments, threats on the President and Secret Service response, and in-depth articles from leading researchers and academics.

Every year we gather in Dallas, and some years in Memphis, Los Angeles and New York, to present and discuss the best new evidence in the murders of Malcolm X, the Kennedy Brothers, Dr. King and others. We invite renowned legal, medical, forensic and ballistics experts, academics and noted authors, and citizen researchers whose work over the years has shed light on these crimes and rewritten our history. We make many of the presentations available by livestream on our website, but being at the event, networking, getting the latest books and resources and meeting those seeking the truth is an experience not to be missed.
This is a critical time because these assassinations are fading into history for later generations. The approaching 5th decade mark may consign active concern about the assassinations of the 60s to past history and indifference, despite widespread acceptance in the public that a conspiracy of some sort was involved, not the actions of a lone, crazed gunman. We are the ones who are left to make sure that this history is not lost and its impact on the present is made clear. November 22, 1963 marked a turning point in America and the rise of the Military Intelligence Industrial Complex that President Eisenhower warned of and Kennedy opposed has defined our history since. The political assassinations that day and others that followed were instrumental in destroying hope for a different future and movements for social change. All those killed had challenged militarism, war, racism and poverty, the "pillars of oppression" defined by Dr. King that still plague us today.


Imagine instead a major conference in Dallas that we have titled "50 Years is Enough!" –
with all the key researchers, authors, legal and medical/forensic experts who have broken the cases open in the past decades there to speak the truth about them, to those present and on the internet to the rest of the world. Imagine a crowd of thousands in Dealey Plaza, along with the world press, seeing our banners calling for release of records and hearing our speakers calling for justice and an independent investigation of these unsolved homicides that would hold those responsible to account and take the sordid history since to task. Imagine a future where the assassination of fairly elected leaders and purveyors of hope for social change would never again be tolerated and would demand full investigations and exposure of the forces behind them. We cannot celebrate the life of John F. Kennedy while we forget his death.

Our Dallas meeting this year will be held from November 22-25 at the Hotel Lawrence, just off Dealey Plaza. We will announce hotel reservation information and rates soon. Information on speakers and other details are being posted at our website as well. Next year we plan to hold a national conference in Dallas, and we may be doing meetings in Memphis and Los Angeles as well if there is interest.

We can't do all this without you. Since 1994, we have worked to present serious research, new evidence, force release of records, support legal challenges and forensic testing, and to keep these cases alive to the public and a new generation. We do all this with the help of a very few donors and on a tiny budget. No foundations sponsor us, and certainly no corporation or government funds. We are volunteers, no paid staff. 


This year, anticipating the need to have a major conference on the 50th anniversary, two donors have put up a challenge grant, which will match all donations made before that up to $2,000. This means a donation of any size will double for us right now and make it possible for us to be visible next year and to bring the best speakers.

Donations of $50 or more will get you a copy of a DVD set of our jam-packed 2011 conference in Dallas. $100 or more will also automatically register you for this year's conference events, a real bargain. Donations are not tax deductible. Checks can be made to COPA at P.O. Box 772, Washington, DC 20044 or credit card donations can be made to our Paypal account from the website (

We need you. Will you join us now with your support? Will you come to Dallas this year and next? Will you stand with us on the Grassy Knoll to speak out and be visible and help get out our call for an Occupy the Grassy Knoll in 2013 (see

COPA has been a leader in this work for nearly two decades and our work is not finished yet. I hope you will contribute now to both the hope of the future and the continued visibility of the past.

Thanks for your support!
John Judge, Director
Coalition on Political Assassinations
PO Box 772
Washington, DC 20044

Check out our website:

Annual meeting in Dallas in November
Hotel Lawrence - 214-761-9090 - discount room reservations
Speakers, films, books, resources, email for details

National organization of medical and ballistic experts, academics and authors, researchers and interested individuals investigating major political assassinations in America and abroad. Responsible for creation and implementation of the JFK Assassination Records Act. Promoting a Martin Luther King Records Act and a grand jury process to reopen all the major assassinations.

We are not allergic to donations, donations NOT tax deductible. DVD set of last year's COPA meeting in Dallas for any donation of $50 or more.

Friday, July 20, 2012

LBJ & The Joint Chiefs - The Day it became the Longest War

The Day It Became the Longest War

Lt. Gen. Charles Cooper, USMC (Ret.)
History News Network

Lt. Gen. Charles Cooper, USMC (Ret.) is the author of "Cheers and Tears: A Marine's Story of Combat in Peace and War" (2002), from which this article is excerpted. The article recently drew national attention after it was posted on MILINET. It is reprinted with the author's permission.

"The President will see you at two o'clock."

It was a beautiful fall day in November of 1965; early in the Vietnam War-too beautiful a day to be what many of us, anticipating it, had been calling "the day of reckoning." We didn't know how accurate that label would be.

The Pentagon is a busy place. Its workday starts early-especially if, as the expression goes, "there's a war on." By seven o'clock, the staff of Admiral David L. McDonald, the Navy's senior admiral and Chief of Naval Operations, had started to work. Shortly after seven, Admiral McDonald arrived and began making final preparations for a meeting with President Lyndon Baines Johnson.

The Vietnam War was in its first year, and its uncertain direction troubled Admiral McDonald and the other service chiefs. They'd had a number of disagreements with Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara about strategy, and had finally requested a private meeting with the Commander in Chief-a perfectly legitimate procedure. Now, after many delays, the Joint Chiefs were finally to have that meeting. They hoped it would determine whether the US military would continue its seemingly directionless buildup to fight a protracted ground war, or take bold measures that would bring the war to an early and victorious end. The bold measures they would propose were to apply massive air power to the head of the enemy, Hanoi, and to close North Vietnam's harbors by mining them.

The situation was not a simple one, and for several reasons. The most important reason was that North Vietnam's neighbor to the north was communist China. Only 12 years had passed since the Korean War had ended in stalemate. The aggressors in that war had been the North Koreans. When the North Koreans' defeat had appeared to be inevitable, communist China had sent hundreds of thousands of its Peoples' Liberation Army "volunteers" to the rescue.

Now, in this new war, the North Vietnamese aggressor had the logistic support of the Soviet Union and, more to the point, of neighboring communist China. Although we had the air and naval forces with which to paralyze North Vietnam, we had to consider the possible reactions of the Chinese and the Russians.

Both China and the Soviet Union had pledged to support North Vietnam in the "war of national liberation" it was fighting to reunite the divided country, and both had the wherewithal to cause major problems. An important unknown was what the Russians would do if prevented from delivering goods to their communist protege in Hanoi. A more important question concerned communist China, next-door neighbor to North Vietnam. How would the Chinese react to a massive pummeling of their ally? More specifically, would they enter the war as they had done in North Korea? Or would they let the Vietnamese, for centuries a traditional enemy, fend for themselves? The service chiefs had considered these and similar questions, and had also asked the Central Intelligence Agency for answers and estimates.

The CIA was of little help, though it produced reams of text, executive summaries of the texts, and briefs of the executive summaries - all top secret, all extremely sensitive, and all of little use. The principal conclusion was that it was impossible to predict with any accuracy what the Chinese or Russians might do.

Despite the lack of a clear-cut intelligence estimate, Admiral McDonald and the other Joint Chiefs did what they were paid to do and reached a conclusion. They decided unanimously that the risk of the Chinese or Soviets reacting to massive US measures taken in North Vietnam was acceptably low, but only if we acted without delay.

Unfortunately, the Secretary of Defense and his coterie of civilian "whiz kids" did not agree with the Joint Chiefs, and McNamara and his people were the ones who were actually steering military strategy. In the view of the Joint Chiefs, the United States was piling on forces in Vietnam without understanding the consequences. In the view of McNamara and his civilian team, we were doing the right thing. This was the fundamental dispute that had caused the Chiefs to request the seldom-used private audience with the Commander in Chief in order to present their military recommendations directly to him. McNamara had finally granted their request.

The 1965 Joint Chiefs of Staff had ample combat experience. Each was serving in his third war. The Chairman was General Earle Wheeler, US Army, highly regarded by the other members.

General Harold Johnson was the Army Chief of Staff. A World War II prisoner of the Japanese, he was a soft-spoken, even-tempered, deeply religious man.

General John P. McConnell, Air Force Chief of Staff, was a native of Arkansas and a 1932 graduate of West Point.

The Commandant of the Marine Corps was General Wallace M. Greene, Jr., a slim, short, all-business Marine. General Greene was a Naval Academy graduate and a zealous protector of the Marine Corps concept of controlling its own air resources as part of an integrated air-ground team.

Last and by no means least was Admiral McDonald, a Georgia minister's son, also a Naval Academy graduate, and a naval aviator. While Admiral McDonald was a most capable leader, he was also a reluctant warrior. He did not like what he saw emerging as a national commitment. He did not really want the US to get involved with land warfare, believing as he did that the Navy could apply sea power against North Vietnam very effectively by mining, blockading, and assisting in a bombing campaign, and in this way help to bring the war to a swift and satisfactory conclusion.

The Joint Chiefs intended that the prime topics of the meeting with the President would be naval matters-the mining and blockading of the port of Haiphong and naval support of a bombing campaign aimed at Hanoi. For that reason, the Navy was to furnish a briefing map, and that became my responsibility. We mounted a suitable map on a large piece of plywood, then coated it with clear acetate so that the chiefs could mark on it with grease pencils during the discussion. The whole thing weighed about 30 pounds.

The Military Office at the White House agreed to set up an easel in the Oval Office to hold the map. I would accompany Admiral McDonald to the White House with the map, put the map in place when the meeting started, then get out. There would be no strap-hangers at the military summit meeting with Lyndon Johnson.

The map and I joined Admiral McDonald in his staff car for the short drive to the White House, a drive that was memorable only because of the silence. My admiral was totally preoccupied.

The chiefs' appointment with the President was for two o'clock, and Admiral McDonald and I arrived about 20 minutes early. The chiefs were ushered into a fairly large room across the hall from the Oval Office. I propped the map board on the arms of a fancy chair where all could view it, left two of the grease pencils in the tray attached to the bottom of the board, and stepped out into the corridor. One of the chiefs shut the door, and they conferred in private until someone on the White House staff interrupted them about fifteen minutes later. As they came out, I retrieved the map, and then joined them in the corridor outside the President's office.

Precisely at two o'clock President Johnson emerged from the Oval Office and greeted the chiefs. He was all charm. He was also big: at three or more inches over six feet tall and something on the order of 250 pounds, he was bigger than any of the chiefs. He personally ushered them into his office, all the while delivering gracious and solicitous comments with a Texas accent far more pronounced than the one that came through when he spoke on television. Holding the map board as the chiefs entered, I peered between them, trying to find the easel. There was none. The President looked at me, grasped the situation at once, and invited me in, adding, "You can stand right over here." I had become an easel-one with eyes and ears.

To the right of the door, not far inside the office, large windows framed evergreen bushes growing in a nearby garden. The President's desk and several chairs were farther in, diagonally across the room from the windows. The President positioned me near the windows, then arranged the chiefs in a semicircle in front of the map and its human easel.

He did not offer them seats: they stood, with those who were to speak-Wheeler, McDonald, and McConnell-standing nearest the President. Paradoxically, the two whose services were most affected by a continuation of the ground buildup in Vietnam-Generals Johnson and Greene-stood farthest from the President. President Johnson stood nearest the door, about five feet from the map.

In retrospect, the setup - the failure to have an easel in place, the positioning of the chiefs on the outer fringe of the office, the lack of seating-did not augur well. The chiefs had expected the meeting to be a short one, and it met that expectation. They also expected it to be of momentous import, and it met that expectation, too. Unfortunately, it also proved to be a meeting that was critical to the proper pursuit of what was to become the longest, most divisive, and least conclusive war in our nation's history-a war that almost tore the nation apart.

As General Wheeler started talking, President Johnson peered at the map. In five minutes or so, the general summarized our entry into Vietnam, the current status of forces, and the purpose of the meeting. Then he thanked the President for having given his senior military advisers the opportunity to present their opinions and recommendations. Finally, he noted that although Secretary McNamara did not subscribe to their views, he did agree that a presidential-level decision was required. President Johnson, arms crossed, seemed to be listening carefully.

The essence of General Wheeler's presentation was that we had come to an early moment of truth in our ever-increasing Vietnam involvement. We had to start using our principal strengths-air and naval power-to punish the North Vietnamese, or we would risk becoming involved in another protracted Asian ground war with no prospects of a satisfactory solution.

Speaking for the chiefs, General Wheeler offered a bold course of action that would avoid protracted land warfare. He proposed that we isolate the major port of Haiphong through naval mining, blockade the rest of the North Vietnamese coastline, and simultaneously start bombing Hanoi with B-52's.

General Wheeler then asked Admiral McDonald to describe how the Navy and Air Force would combine forces to mine the waters off Haiphong and establish a naval blockade. When Admiral McDonald finished, General McConnell added that speed of execution would be essential, and that we would have to make the North Vietnamese believe that we would increase the level of punishment if they did not sue for peace.

Normally, time dims our memories-but it hasn't dimmed this one. My memory of Lyndon Johnson on that day remains crystal clear.

While General Wheeler, Admiral McDonald, and General McConnell spoke, he seemed to be listening closely, communicating only with an occasional nod. When General McConnell finished, General Wheeler asked the President if he had any questions.

Johnson waited a moment or so, then turned to Generals Johnson and Greene, who had remained silent during the briefing, and asked, "Do you fully support these ideas?" He followed with the thought that it was they who were providing the ground troops, in effect acknowledging that the Army and the Marines were the services that had most to gain or lose as a result of this discussion. Both generals indicated their agreement with the proposal. Seemingly deep in thought, President Johnson turned his back on them for a minute or so, then suddenly discarding the calm, patient demeanor he had maintained throughout the meeting, whirled to face them and exploded.

I almost dropped the map. He screamed obscenities, he cursed them personally, he ridiculed them for coming to his office with their "military advice." Noting that it was he who was carrying the weight of the free world on his shoulders, he called them filthy names - shitheads, dumb shits, pompous assholes - and used "the F-word" as an adjective more freely than a Marine in boot camp would use it. He then accused them of trying to pass the buck for World War III to him. It was unnerving, degrading.

After the tantrum, he resumed the calm, relaxed manner he had displayed earlier and again folded his arms. It was as though he had punished them, cowed them, and would now control them. Using soft-spoken profanities, he said something to the effect that they all knew now that he did not care about their military advice. After disparaging their abilities, he added that he did expect their help.

He suggested that each one of them change places with him and assume that five incompetents had just made these "military recommendations." He told them that he was going to let them go through what he had to go through when idiots gave him stupid advice, adding that he had the whole damn world to worry about, and it was time to "see what kind of guts you have." He paused, as if to let it sink in. The silence was like a palpable solid, the tension like that in a drumhead. After thirty or forty seconds of this, he turned to General Wheeler and demanded that Wheeler say what he would do if he were the President of the United States.

General Wheeler took a deep breath before answering. He was not an easy man to shake: his calm response set the tone for the others. He had known coming in, as had the others that Lyndon Johnson was an exceptionally strong personality and a venal and vindictive man as well. He had known that the stakes were high, and now realized that McNamara had prepared Johnson carefully for this meeting, which had been a charade.

Looking President Johnson squarely in the eye, General Wheeler told him that he understood the tremendous pressure and sense of responsibility Johnson felt. He added that probably no other President in history had had to make a decision of this importance, and further cushioned his remarks by saying that no matter how much about the presidency he did understand, there were many things about it that only one human being could ever understand. General Wheeler closed his remarks by saying something very close to this: "You, Mr. President, are that one human being. I cannot take your place, think your thoughts, know all you know, and tell you what I would do if I were you. I can't do it, Mr. President. No man can honestly do it. Respectfully, sir, it is your decision and yours alone."

Apparently unmoved, Johnson asked each of the other Chiefs the same question. One at a time, they supported General Wheeler and his rationale. By now, my arms felt as though they were about to break. The map seemed to weigh a ton, but the end appeared to be near. General Greene was the last to speak.

When General Greene finished, President Johnson, who was nothing if not a skilled actor, looked sad for a moment, then suddenly erupted again, yelling and cursing, again using language that even a Marine seldom hears. He told them he was disgusted with their naive approach, and that he was not going to let some military idiots talk him into World War III. He ended the conference by shouting "Get the hell out of my office!"

The Joint Chiefs of Staff had done their duty. They knew that the nation was making a strategic military error, and despite the rebuffs of their civilian masters in the Pentagon, they had insisted on presenting the problem as they saw it to the highest authority and recommending solutions. They had done so, and they had been rebuffed. That authority had not only rejected their solutions, but had also insulted and demeaned them. As Admiral McDonald and I drove back to the Pentagon, he turned to me and said that he had known tough days in his life, and sad ones as well, but ". . . this has got to have been the worst experience I could ever imagine."

The US involvement in Vietnam lasted another ten years. The irony is that it began to end only when President Richard Nixon, after some backstage maneuvering on the international scene, did precisely what the Joint Chiefs of Staff had recommended to President Johnson in 1965.

Why had Johnson not only dismissed their recommendations, but also ridiculed them? It must have been that Johnson had lacked something. Maybe it was foresight or boldness. Maybe it was the sophistication and understanding it took to deal with complex international issues. Or, since he was clearly a bully, maybe what he lacked was courage.

We will never know. But had General Wheeler and the others received a fair hearing, and had their recommendations received serious study, the United States may well have saved the lives of most of its more than 55,000 sons who died in a war that its major architect, Robert Strange McNamara, now considers to have been a tragic mistake.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Carlyle - JFK's NYC Digs

The Carlyle
The Famous Come and Go
By Pat Herman

NEW YORK CITY, Feb. 4. (UPI) – President Kennedy has chose as the New York City “White House” a hotel so exclusive that it allows ex-President Truman and Indian Premier Jawahrlal Nehru go unnoticed as Mr. Smith or Mr. Jones.

It is a White House in the sky and set with the grandeur of Paris on an avenue in New York City lined with art galleries and fashionable shops. Thirty-five stories above the street from his duplex apartment in the Hotel Carlyle the President can watch the sun rise or set. He can see west to New Jersey, east to the United Nations building and south almost to the tip of Manhattan Island.

At night, he can see the delicate blue lights which gently illuminate the small trees in front of the hotel. In the direction of Fifth Avenue, just a block away, are the twinkling lights of Central Park and, a bit north, the façade of the Metropolitan Museum of Art spotlighted as dramatically as the Louvre.

The view is as exciting as any seen in Paris’ Place De La Concorde or San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge.

They say at the hotel that only “the privileged” have stayed in suite 35B. It is reckoned that its rent for the average citizen would run close to $40,000 a year.

The presence of Mr. Truman, Nehru, Frances ex-Premier Pierre Mendes-France and the cream of international society is taken as an everyday occurrence by the guests of the 500 room hotel. Their composure is a natural part of the elegant 18th Century décor.

They have seen maharajahs come and business tycoons go. They blinked not an eye when Harry Truman was presented with a birthday cake complete with candles two years ago in the middle of the lobby after an early morning walk.

But the residence of Mr. Kennedy, younger, more glamorous and President of the United States, has excited the usually undemonstrative guests and raised the blood pressure of the hotel staff from manager down to bellhop.

“We’ve had Mr. Truman here but never the hoopla surrounding Mr. Kennedy’s visits,” said on secretary.

The hotel staff led by French-born Robert Huyot, who managed the Waldorf Astoria Towers when Mr. Kennedy’s father stayed there, is happy to have the President as a once-in-awhile guest. But Mr. Huyot noted a few of the details which made Mr. Kennedy’s presence more complicated than that of any other head of state:

-         Cheering mobs of youths anxious for a glimpse of their political hero crowd the sidewalks outside the grey-white stone building.
-         Whenever Mr. Kennedy arrives 30 direct telephone lines go into operation to accommodate the press.
-         Every morsel of food that is sent up to the presidential suite is personally tasted by Carlyle Chef Ernest Didler, formally of the Hotel Crillon in Paris. This is for security reasons, although the chef said he considered the chore “a pleasure.”
-         The Secret Service has scrutinized the hotel’s guest list and investigated every member of the staff apt to deal directly with the presidential party. Every piece of fruit or bouquet of flowers sent into the beige-carpeted suite is inspected.

Fortunately, Mr. Kennedy himself himself is easy to please.

Hotel President Robert Dowling and Mr. Huyot said that “he liked the suite the way it was” and that “he let this be known to us when he heard that we were planning extensive changes.”

Mrs. Kennedy, who stayed in the suite with her husband several times during the campaign, concurred. So the only alteration after Mr. Kennedy informed the hotel that he wanted to make the suite his New York presidential home was the hanging of several new paintings. These included several originals by Murillo, Degas, Pissarro and American painter Mary Cassatt.

Upstairs are two bedrooms. Mr. Kennedy uses the larger one, furnished and upholstered completely in beige. A Murillo hangs over the bed. There are two telephones on the bed table and a side switch for the bed lamp to facilitate reading. All chairs are covered in cream colored French brocade.

Between the bedrooms is a golden walled glass-enclosed breakfast room facing due east. When weather permits the breakfast room opens onto a spacious terrace. This runs the perimeter of the suite, encircling the entire tower except on the north side.

The entire Kennedy suite is carpeted in soft beige. The walls match. Furniture is all of the Louis XV period. A commode in the downstairs hall is an original. The living room is dominated by a plate glass window which almost spans its length.

The room faces west. The orange upholstery of the chairs is as golden as the setting sun dipping behind the giant skyscrapers. Mr. Kennedy favors the straight-backed open-armed chairs to the easier ones when he is not using the sofa. It is covered in olive-green velvet and sits behind a scene of London painted by Camille Pissarro.

A portable television set stands unobtrusively in the far corner. There is one private telephone in the room. The small den between living room and dining room has two. One belongs to the hotel. The other is a direct line into the suite. The den has a generous sized desk but Mr. Kennedy prefers to use the sofa when he works.

From “The Kennedy Detail” by Gerald Blaine (p. 25)

“Sandy Garelick was the senior police officer who headed up the New York City Bureau of Special Services and Investigations (BOSSI) squad and was the point man for setting up additional security for the president’s frequent visits to the city. He had handpicked his squad and the team was great to work with. Professionally they were among the best in the country. Garelick, however, had a strong personality that would present a real challenge for the Secret Service advance agents. Garelick didn’t seem to realize that the boarders of the United States extend beyond New York City, and he wanted to know what the president would be doing every minute he was in BOSSI territory. Garelick thrived on the attention the publicized presidential visits brought to his unit and proudly utilized the thirty thousand New York Police Department officers to endure the president’s security. The conflicts came during the off-the-record visits like this one when President Kennedy wanted to slip into the city as quietly as possible, with no fanfare. There had been enough clashes in the past three years that you could almost see President Kennedy cringe the minute he saw Sandy Garelick.”

“Somehow ATSAIC Art Godfrey had found a way to compromise with Garelick, though, and thus he was almost always given the advance assignments to New York. None of the other agents knew for sure if Godfrey really got along with Garelick, or if he was just smart enough to realize that an advance assignment to New York meant an extended stay at the Carlyle Hotel.”

“The burgers at the Carlyle’s Bemelmans Bar were as famous as the fanciful murals that decorated the walls of the renowned New York landmark,….”

“The president’s brother Senator Ted Kennedy was in town, staying at their sister’s house on Fifth Avenue, and the president wanted to pay a quick visit.”

Burt Sugar - 


In “The Assassination Chain” – Bert Sugar and Sybil Leek wrote about the JFK assassination as seen from a post-Watergate perspective, after the mob connections had come out. In this book they mention that one day, while dining at the Carlyle Hotel, they recognized John Rosselli and Judith Cambell Extner at a nearby table.

At some point, Extner leaves the table and doesn’t return for quite some time. They imply that Extner was visiting JFK at his 35th floor suite.

                                               KING ARTHUR AT CARLISLE CASTLE

Tradition: Carlisle. It was the site of one of King Arthur's many palaces spread around the country. It was at Carduel that Perceval (Peredyr) first arrived at King Arthur's Court and, from here, Yvain (Owein) set out on his grand adventure. Erec (orGereint) also hoped to track Arthur down at either his court at Caduel or Robais.

Carlisle is similarly mentioned, via its modern name, by Sir Thomas Malory. Arthur received a Roman delegation there, and it was at Carlisle Castle that Medrod and Agravain discovered Lancelot and Gwenhwyfar in flagrante delicto. Lancelot escaped from the ensuing armed skirmish, but Gwenhwyfar remained to be sentenced to be burnt at the stake outside the city walls. Lancelot naturally returned to rescue her, but the resulting Wars enabled Medrod to seize the British throne and inevitably led to the fateful Battle of CamlannEarly ballads concerning Gawain's unfortunate marriage to the "Loathly Lady" and his encounter with the spellbound giant "Carl of Carlisle" are also centred on the town and claim that:

King Arthur lives in merry Carlisle,
And seemly is to see;
And there with him Queen Guenever,
That bride so bright of blee.


From “The Once and Future King” – (p.513)

There was a knight from Hungry called Sir Urre, who had received wounds in a tournament several years before. He had been fighting with a man called Sir Alphagus, whom he had killed after getting these wounds – three of them on the head, four on the body and on the left hand. The mother of the dead Alphagus had been a Spanish witch, and she had put an enchantment on Sir Urre of Hungry, so that none of his wounds could ever heal up. All the time they were to go on bleeding, turn about, until the best knight in the best knight in the world had tended them and salved them with his hands.

Sir Urre of Hungry had long been carried from country to country – perhaps it was a sort of hemophilia – searching for the best knight who would be able to help. At last he had braved the channel to reach this foreign, northern land, Everybody had told him, everywhere, that his only chance was Lancelot, and in the end he had come to seek.

The court was at Carlisle at the time, for the feast of Pentecost, and it was arranged that everybody should meet in the town meadow. Sir Urre was carried there in a litter and laid on a cushion of gold cloth, for the attempt at healing to begin.

A hundred and ten knights – forty were away on quests – stood round him in ordered ranks, in their best clothes, and there were carpets laid down, and pavilions set up for the great ladies to watch. Arthur loved his Lancelot so much that he wanted him to have a splendid setting, in which his crowning achievement could be done.

This is the end of the book of Sir Lancelot, and now we are to see him for the last time in it. He was hiding in the harness-room of the castle, whence he could spy the field….He was waiting there, hidden, praying that somebody – Gareth perhaps? – would be able to do the miracle quickly; or, if not that they would overlook him, that his absence would not be noticed.

Do you think it would be fine to be the best knight in the world? Think, then, also, how you would have to defend the title. Think of the tests, such repeated, remorseless, scandal-breathing tests, which day after day would be applied to you – until the last and uncertain day, when you would fail.

Think also that you know of a good reason for your failure, which you have tried to hide, tried pathetically to hide and overlook, for five and twenty years. Think that you are now to go out, before the largest and most honorable gallery that can be assembled, to make a public demonstration of your sin. They are expecting you to succeed, and you are to fail; you are to publish the deceit which you have practiced for a quarter of a century, and they will all immediately know the reason for it – that reason of shame which you have sought to conceal from your own mind, and which, when it has been remembered itself in the silence of your empty chamber, has pricked you into a physical motion of your head to throw it off. Miracles, which you wanted to do long ago, can only be done by the pure in heart. The people outside are waiting for your to do this miracle because you have traded on their belief that your heart was pure – and now, with treachery and adultery and murder wringing the heart like a cloth, you are to go out into the sunlight for the test of honor.

Lancelot stood in the harness room as white as a sheet, Guenever was out there, he knew, and she was also pale. He twisted his fingers and looked at the strong reins, and prayed as best he could.

Lancelot did not hang himself with the reins… Now he was ready to take his punishment. He went to the long avenue of knights who waited in the sun. By the very attempt to evade notice he had brought on himself the conspicuous place of last. He walked down the curious ranks, ugly as ever, self-conscious, ashamed, a veteran going to be broken….

When Lancelot was kneeling in front of Urre, he said to King Arthur: “Need I do this, after everybody has failed?”

“Of course you must do it. I command you.”

“If you command me, I must. But it would be presumptuous to try – after everybody. Could I be let off?”

“You are taking it the wrong way,” said the King. “Of course it is not presumption for you to try. If you can’t do it, nobody can.”

Sir Urre, who was weak by now, raised himself on an elbow.

“Please,” he said. “I came for you to do it.”

Lancelot had tears in his eyes.

“Oh, Sir Urre,” he said, “if only I could help you, how willingly I would. But you don’t understand, you don’t understand.”

“For God’s sake,” said Sir Urre.

Lancelot looked into the East, where he thought God lived, and said something in his mind. It as more or less like this: “I don’t want glory, but please can you save our honesty? And if you will heal this knight for the knight’s sake, please do.” Then he asked Sir Urre to show him his head.

Guenever, who was watching fro her pavilion like a hawk, saw the two men fumbling together. Then she saw a movement in the people near, and a mutter came, and yells. Gentlemen began throwing their caps about, and shouting, and shaking heads. Arthur was crying the same words again and again, holding gruff Gawaine by the elbow and putting them into his ear. “It shut like a box! It shut like a box!”

Some elderly knights were dancing around, banging their shields together as if they were playing Pease Pudding Hot, and poking each other in the ribs. Many of the squires were laughing like madmen and slapping each other on the back. Sir Bors was kissing King Anguish of Ireland, who resented it…The cheers now began, round after round, were like drumfire or thunder, rolling round the turrets of Carlisle. Al the field, and all of the people in the field, and all the towers of the castle, seemed to be jumping up and down like the surface of a lake under rain.

In the middle, quite forgotten, her lover was kneeling by himself. This lonely and motionless figure knew a secret which was hidden from the others. The miracle was that he had been allowed to do a miracle….

William Travis Taylor as Lancelot in Light Opera...


Friday, July 6, 2012

Bottlefed By Oswald's NANA

BOTTLEFED BY OSWALD’S NANA – By Bill Kelly & John Judge

“Not even Marina knows why I went to Russia” – Lee Harvey Oswald


With the intent of returning to the United States, ex-Marine and American defector Lee Harvey Oswald wrote a letter from Russia to former Secretary of the Navy John Connally whom he was later accused of shooting, trying to get his Marine discharge corrected.

After more than a year without communication, Oswald’s mother wrote to tell him that his discharge had been downgraded from honorable to undesirable. Oswald drafted the letter to Secretary of the Navy Connally, attempting to appeal his status.

Oswald had defected to Russia shortly after being discharged from the Marines in 1959. He had a good record in the military, held a top-level security clearance, monitored the U-2 spy plane as a radar operator in Japan, and had good grades in a Russian language test after taking accelerated courses, apparently at the Monterey Language Institute (Now the Defense Language Institute).

The circumstances of his discharge from the Marines were unusual. A letter documenting an injury his mother had sustained (nasopharyngitis from a blow to her nose), used as a basis for his early dismissal, arrived several days after he was granted a “hardship discharge.” It had been a fully honorable discharge at the time, ostensibly allowing him to return home to support his injured mother.

Oswald returned home, however he shortly afterward boarded a tramp steamer for Europe on the first leg of a journey that would take him behind the Iron Curtain, from France and England to Helsinki and Moscow, where he turned over his passport to the US Embassy officer Richard Snyder, announcing his defection. After his defection received press attention in the United States, the Marines held a court-martial in Oswald’s absence, changing his discharge to undesirable. It was illegal to hold such a court martial “in absentia,” and improper to base the grade of discharge on events that occurred after his military service ended.

Oswald later assumed an infamous position in American history as the alleged assassin of President John F. Kennedy, and is also alleged to have shot then Texas Governor John Connally and Dallas police officer J. D. Tippit. But whether the victim is the President of the United States or a bum in the street, in every homicide investigation, the approach to solving the murder must address the means, motive and opportunity to commit the crime.

Determining Oswald’s motive would prove to be a key to implicating him in any role in the assassination, other than what he claimed to be – “a patsy.”

The actual motives and real behavior of Lee Harvey Oswald were never ascertained.

In this context, Oswald’s letter to Connally is revealing, especially as it pertains to his motive in going to Russia after leaving the Marines, and may be a critical clue to his real historical role. Although cryptic, it can be deciphered. Oswald wrote to Connally:

“I wish to call your attention to a case about which you may have personal knowledge since you are a resident of Ft. Worth as I am. In November of 1959, an event was well puplicated in Ft. Worth newspapers concerning a person who had gone to the Soviet Union to reside for a short time (much in the same way E. Hemingway resided in Paris).”

“This person, in answers to questions put to him by reporters in Moscow, criticized certain facets of American life. The story was blown up into another “turncoat” sensation, with the result being the Navy department gave this person a belated dishonorable discharge, although he had received an honorable discharge after three years of service on September 11, 1959 at El Toro Marine Corps base in California.”
“These are the basic facts of my case. I have always had the full sanction of the U.S Embassy, Moscow, USSR, and hence the U.S. Government.”

By the time Oswald wrote this letter, Connally had been replaced as Secretary of the Navy by Fred Korth, a Fort Worth attorney. Oswald was not unknown to Korth, since Korth had represented Oswald’s stepfather in his divorce from his mother, Marguerite. Korth became embroiled in a scandal as Secretary of Navy in regards to the controversial TFX fighter, and had to resign a few weeks before the assassination.


One of the reporters Oswald complained about in his letter to Connally was Priscilla Johnson McMillan.
In her book “Lee & Marina,” Priscilla Johnson McMillan notes that Oswald “went so far as to compare his sojourn in Russia with that of Hemingway in Paris in the 20’s.”

Indeed, Hemingway lived in Paris in the ‘20s as an expatriate writer, and later described the experience in his book A Moveable Feast, and perhaps he did have pretensions of becoming a writer in the Soviet Union. He did write voraciously, kept notes and a journal, took photographs and wrote a short story titled “The Collective.”

According to Priscilla Johnson McMillan, Oswald wrote in the style of one of his favorite authors, George Orwell, keeping a typewriter wrapped in a blanket so that the noise would not alert suspicions, and he went to great lengths to smuggle out manuscripts when he left the Soviet Union. She also notes that Oswald also took a fancy to Ian Fleming’s James Bond spy thrillers.

This rather romantic view of Oswald as a dissident writer may have more to do with Priscilla’s imagination than his own. She is also the author of “Khrushchev and the Arts: The Politics of Soviet Culture 1962-1964,” which presents embellished profiles of some Soviet writers as dissidents.

But Oswald never specified the 20’s in his analogy, and Priscilla Johnson McMillan’s conjecture on this point is speculative. A more convincing argument could be made that Oswald was referring to Hemingway’s stay in Paris in the 1940’s instead.


In 1944 Hemingway was in France, not just as a journalist, but as a war correspondent attached to the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), and a comparison of Oswald’s experiences and Hemingway’s later activities is even more revealing.

Out of Key West, Florida and Havana, Cuba, early in the war Hemingway served as a special agent for the U.S. Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI), using his fishing boat “the Pilar,” to patrol for Nazi submarines.
While working as a war correspondent for the North American Newspaper Alliance (NANA), Hemingway wrote about the war and life on the front lines, and sometimes behind the lines.

Hemingway’s son was a member of the JEDBERGs, a joint UK-USA detachment trained as commandos in England and parachuted behind the lines to organize resistance to the occupying Nazi armies. Hemingway’s son was captured by the Germans and spent the rest of the war in a prisoner of war camp.

Hemingway himself organized and led a loose band of French resistance fighters and, along with OSS Col. David Bruce, participated in the liberation of Paris.

Bruce was the senior OSS officer on the ground in the European theater of operations. Bruce would later serve as best man at Hemingway’s wedding and JFK’s Ambassador to the Court of St. James. Riding a jeep at the head of a convoy of trucks of armed partisans, while French General LeClerc accepted the surrender of the German general at the train station, Hemingway and Bruce liberated the bar at the Hotel Ritz, where Hemingway also lived on occasion. Today, the Hemingway Bar at the Ritz is named in his honor.
Placing his gun on the bar, when the bartender asked what he wanted to drink, Hemingway looked around, counted heads and said, “Sixty vodka martinis.” Of course that would be “shaken,’ not stirred,” as a strong case can be made that Oswald went behind the Iron Curtain in the same way as Hemingway went to Paris in 1944, when it was still “behind the lines,” and not as a writer, but as an intelligence agent.


In his letter to Connally, Oswald complained that his story became another “turncoat sensation” at the hands of journalists who interviewed him in Moscow. He had good reason to believe that the Hotel Metropole rooms where he stayed were bugged for sound, and that what he told the reporters would also be reaching the ears of Soviet authorities. Soviet intelligence was quite suspicious of his “defection.”

The Warren Commission, appointed by President Lyndon B. Johnson to investigate and report on the assassination of President Kennedy, automatically assumed that the Soviet journalists who interviewed Oswald in Russia were KGB agents, but they never voiced a similar suspicion that the American journalists who interviewed him had U.S. intelligence connections as well.

The idea of journalists being used as spies or intelligence agents posing as journalists is not a new one. The British circle of W. Somerset Maugham, Noel Coward, Malcolm Muggeridge, Kim Philby, Cyril Connally and Peter and Ian Fleming serves as a good example, especially because it comes into play here.

When information about the CIA’s “Family Jewels” was released in the late 1970s, the agency’s use of journalists as spies was exposed, along with other nefarious activities, such as behavior modification, MKULTRA drug experiments and the attempted assassination of foreign leaders.

Carl Bernstein, in Rolling Stone Magazine, reported over 400 cases of such CIA journalist-spies working in the printed media alone, and the CIA’s network of media agents and assets, which covert action chief Frank Wisner said could be played like a Wurlwizter organ, has been referred to as “Operation Mockingbird.”

During World War II there was a popular song, “A Mockingbird Sang on Berkley Square,” which was near the then secret British code-breaking detachment.

Former CIA director Richard Helms worked as a reporter for UPI in Germany before World War II, managed an exclusive interview with Adolph Hitler, and is one of the few people who can’t remember where he was when John F. Kennedy was killed.

Penthouse magazine revealed that the Copley News Service out of San Diego, California, was run by former OSS spies and was actively used to promote CIA propaganda and disinformation. It has since been learned that dozens of similar operations existed.

The University of Missouri School of Journalism produced “Soviet Affairs Expert” and “KGB” author John Barron, who worked with U.S. Naval Intelligence before joining Readers Digest. That firm also published his book, and supported the research of Edward J. Epstein, author of “Legend: The Secret Life of Lee Harvey Oswald,” which makes the case that Oswald was more than just a crazed lone-nut. Readers Digest also supported Henry Hurt’s research for a book on the assassination of President Kennedy, but after it took a conspiratorial bent he had to find another publisher.

The first American reporter to interview Oswald in Moscow, Aline Mosby, was also a graduate of the University of Missouri School of Journalism and worked as a correspondent for UPI. Oswald and Mosby talked for two hours, while Oswald explained his reasons for defecting to her, and the listening Soviet ears.
Priscilla Johnson McMillan was another reporter who met Oswald in Moscow. She interviewed Oswald for five hours in a hotel room at the Metropole. Years later she wrote that, “Lee looked and sounded like Joe College, with a slight southern drawl. But his life hadn’t been that of a typical college boy…As we sat in my hotel room that evening and into the early hours of the morning, he talked quietly about his plans to defect to Russia. I soon came to feel this boy was the stuff of which fanatics are made.”

Following the interview Priscilla said she, “asked him to please come back to see me before he became a Soviet citizen, or whatever was going to happen, just so that he would know somebody. It wasn’t very journalistic, I know, but I felt sorry for him.”

On the same day Priscilla Johnson spoke with Oswald in Moscow, his fingerprints were pulled from FBI files in Washington.

Priscilla later admitted that she sought Oswald out “on the advice of an American colleague in Moscow.” The colleague turned out to be John McVicker, an Embassy officer and assistant to Richard Snyder, Oswald’s primary contact at the US Embassy. Snyder had connections to the CIA, and his intelligence background was later exposed at the spy trial of Oleg Penkovsky, an American double-agent during the Cuban missile crisis, who was executed. If Snyder was an intelligence officer, then so was McVicker, and if McVicker was Priscilla Johnson’s “colleague,” it is likely so was she. In fact, the files released under the JFK Assassination Records Act reveal that Johnson was a “witting informant” and valuable asset if not an agent of the CIA.

When Oswald renounced his citizenship he handed over his passport to Snyder, a passport that said Oswald was in the “import-export” business, just as Ian Fleming’s fictional 007 had the cover job of working for “Universal Export.” Actually Oswald did work in the “import-export” business shortly before he enlisted in the Marines. When he was only sixteen years old, Oswald worked as a messenger for Leon Trujague & Company, a New Orleans import-export company. Trujague was on the board of directors of the Friends for Democratic Cuba, an anti-Castro Cuban organization that used Oswald’s name, while he was in Russia, to purchase jeeps to be used for covert operations against Cuba.

When he handed over his passport to Snyder, Oswald threatened to apply for permanent citizenship in the Soviet Union. But when his “stateless persons” permit expired, Oswald only applied to extend it. Snyder kept Oswald’s passport handy, in his desk drawer, and handed it back to him when Oswald told Snyder he was ready to return home with his Russian wife Marin. Snyder also assisted in getting them clearance and travel funds from the State Department.

After Priscilla Johnson interviewed Oswald, and told him to contact her before obtaining Soviet citizenship, she dined with Snyder’s assistant, McVickers, who later told the Warren Commission that he thought Oswald “followed a pattern of behavior which indicated that he had been tutored by person or persons unknown, and that he had been in contact with others before or during his Marine Corps tour who had guided him in his actions.”

In an amazing coincidence, Oliver Hallett, the Navy attaché at the US Embassy in Moscow - who was apparently in the room at the time Oswald handed over his passport and announced his defection – was also the Navy officer in the White House Situation Room on November 22, 1963. Hallet relayed the wire service reports to the Cabinet Plane and Air Force One that Oswald had been arrested as a suspect in the assassination. Hallett’s wife, a receptionist at the Embassy, also met Oswald in Moscow, and escorted him to Snyder’s office.

By another amazing coincidence, Priscilla Johnson McMillan, one of the first reporters to interview Oswald at the time of his defection in Moscow, was the only writer permitted to speak to Oswald’s wife Marina after the assassination. Over the years, Priscilla Johnson would write periodic pieces on the assassination, always portraying Oswald as the archetypical “lone nut.” In a piece for the New York Times, she even suggested that by killing Kennedy, Oswald was fulfilling the “primal wish to kill the father.” More recently she wrote an article that questioned whether or not “assassination is contagious.”

In book reviews for the New York Times, the Philadelphia Inquirer and New York Review of Books she consistently praised those who support the Warren Commission’s conclusions, such as David Belin’s “You Are the Jury,” while criticizing those who suggest there is evidence of conspiracy, like “The Fish Is Red” by William Turner & Warren Hinckle.

In a televised appearance on Tom Snyder’s TV show in the 1970s, Priscilla Johnson repeated her constant theme in relation to any belief in a conspiracy to kill Kennedy. “It’s hard for people to accept,” she claimed, “the idea that one person who is not so different from themselves, went off and did a thing like that. It threatens people’s sense of order about history.”

“You think that the President’s elected by the whole country,” she said, “and when one man can step up there and nullify the will of an entire country, it makes life seem meaningless and without order, and I think conspiracy theorists want to give life an order and coherence that it lacks. It’s terribly upsetting to think that Oswald could do that.”

Of course, if Oswald was the assassin, and not the patsy, and he was in fact a deranged lone-nut case who was acting on his own perverted, psychological motives, then there would be no meaning to what happened at Dealey Plaza.

But if Oswald was set up as the patsy, or was one of the snipers who was part of a well planned and executed covert intelligence operation, then the assassination, whatever you believe happened at Dealey Plaza, is infused with meaning and makes political and historic sense when placed in the proper context. If Oswald was a patsy, it also means that Oswald was innocent of the crimes attributed to him, and others have gotten away with murder.

The task of the posthumous reconstruction of Oswald’s real background resembles peeling the layers of an onion. Oswald has been variously portrayed as an agent of Cuban or Russian intelligence, a ‘lone nut’ and a Mafia hit man, but none of these portraits explains his defection and subsequent activities in New Orleans and Dallas, his association with both the Fair Play for Cuba Committee (FPCC) and Student Revolutionary Directorate (DRE), or his conduct and statements on the day and day after the assassination. In reality, Oswald, the alleged assassin, as a pawn in a much larger game, played only a small but critical role in the covert operation that left the President dead and a new government in power.

The framing of Oswald was a critical part of the cover-up. Establishing possible false motives for his actions, especially after he was dead, became the primary occupation of the Warren Commission and the media, while subsequent psychological profiles of Oswald, assuming he was the killer, ignore the political power plays and the broader context in which he moved. Some of these “studies,” especially those that maintain Oswald was the lone assassin and acted on psychological motives, are deliberately deceptive; and journalists who played more than a passive role in this endeavor must be held suspect and accountable.

Oswald seemed doomed to a succession of negative characterizations from supposed friends and seemingly sympathetic acquaintances who were later to denigrate him and implicate him in the murder of Kennedy. Priscilla Johnson McMillan was merely one of the first.

Priscilla Johnson was a Russian major at Bryn Mawr College, on the Main Line in Philadelphia, and was intimately entwined with the US intelligence community. While a college student she was a World Federalist, an organization that tried to persuade the nations of the world to form a “world government” and strengthen the United Nations. Cord Meyer, Jr., one of the founders of the World Federalists, and a former New York neighbor of Johnson, went on to become a deputy to CIA director Allen Dulles and the head of the CIA’s International Organizations Division.

After Johnson applied for employment with the CIA, she was at first rejected because of her World Federalist associations. She worked for awhile for Senator John F. Kennedy while he was recuperating from a back operation and writing Profiles In Courage, which would win him a Pulitzer Prize. In 1991, Priscilla Johnson appeared on a television program with former CIA director William Colby, who also continued to portray Oswald as the lone assassin and lone nut while she played up her association with both Oswald and Kennedy. She also intimated that Kennedy flirted with her during her short period she was with him, playing up on his “womanizing.”

While Kennedy went on to become President, Priscilla Johnson worked as a translator for the State Department and the New York Times. She has threatened libel suits against publications that claim she worked for the CIA, but has never followed up on these threats. 

Priscilla Johnson claimed that because she couldn’t get a security clearance for government work, she went to Moscow as a correspondent for the North American Newspaper Alliance (NANA).

NANA – The North American Newspaper Alliance

NANA was a large and prominent American news and feature service syndicate that once competed with Associated Press (AP) and United Press International (UPI) wire services, and included Ernest Hemingway as one of its correspondents.

Another NANA correspondent, Inga Maria Peterson Arvad, was said to have been recruited by NANA editor Ernest Cuneo. A Danish beauty queen, she managed interviews with Herman Goering’s fiancé and Hitler himself. In January 1942 Walter Winchell broke the story that a young naval officer, the son of a former ambassador, was dating a young women who many suspected of being a Nazi spy. The naval officer, John F. Kennedy, had met Arvad through his sister, and the two went on a holiday to a Charleston, South Carolina resort hotel, where their lovemaking was said to have been recorded by J. Edgar Hover and the FBI, just as 007 was filmed in bed in “From Russia with Love.”

Although an officer assigned to the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) at the time, Kennedy was quickly reassigned to the South Pacific.

In the mid-nineteen fifties, NANA was purchased by former British Intelligence officer Ivor Bryce and his American associate Ernest Cuneo, who served in the Office of Strategic Services (OSS). The funds for the purchase of NANA reportedly came from the proceeds of the sale of one of Bryce’s Texas oil wells.
Ivor Bryce, an independently wealthy millionaire, and Cuneo, were both close friends and associates of Ian Fleming, so after the war, when they purchased NANA, they hired Fleming to be the European Editor.
During the war, Ian Fleming served as assistant to the chief of British Naval Intelligence. Fleming came to America and met Cuneo while visiting Sir William Stephenson at his New York apartment. Stephenson, a Canadian industrialist, had replaced Sir. William Wiseman as the representative of British Intelligence in the United States.

While on a wartime mission to the United States, Fleming wrote out an outline for the establishment of a permanent American intelligence agency, based on the British model, and was given a gun, a .38 Police Positive revolver from Donovan for his efforts.

Donovan’s OSS was patterned on the British Military Intelligence 6 – MI6 organization, and its officers learned their spy tradecraft techniques from their British mentors. The director of MI6, Sir Stewart Menzies, was known as “C.”

Ernest Cuneo, a New York  attorney, had served as an aide to New York mayor LaGuardia and as a wartime assistant to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, with an officer’s rank in the OSS. Cuneo was one of the main liaisons between President Roosevelt, William “Big Bill” Donovan, chief of the OSS, and William “Little Bill” Stephenson, aka “a man called INTREPID,” the representative of British Intelligence in the United States.

The names of both Fleming’s associates at NANA were to appear in the 007 novels, Cuneo as a Las Vegas cab driver in “Diamonds Are Forever” and Bryce as an alias for James Bond in “Dr. No.”

During World War II, Ian Fleming had helped organize Operation Goldeneye, a plan for the defense of Gibraltar, and parachuted into France during the Nazi blitzkrieg on a mission to convince French Admiral Darlan to move his fleet to a neutral or English port. Fleming was unsuccessful, and Darlan’s fleet fought the Allied armies in North Africa and Darlan himself was assassinated, probably by British agents. Fleming was more successful in helping Yugoslavian King Zog to escape the Nazis. His brother, Peter Fleming outranked him in the Naval Intelligence services and was part of Operation Sea Lion.

Fleming had accompanied Ivor Bryce to Jamaica for a wartime conference on U-boat warfare in the Atlantic, and after the war, Fleming became Jamaican neighbors with others who maintained vacation homes along Jamaica’s north shore, including Bryce, Stephenson and Noel Coward. Fleming’s house there was called Goldeneye.

So when Priscilla Johnson went to Moscow as a correspondent for NANA, when she interviewed Lee Harvey Oswald at the time of his defection, Ian Fleming was NANA’s European Editor and Ivor Bryce and Ernest Cuneo signed her checks.


After leaving NANA, Priscilla Johnson became an associate at the Harvard University Russian Research Center and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Center for International Studies. The Russian Research Center itself was bankrolled by CIA funds through the Ford Foundation, whose board of directors included McGeorge Bundy, President Kennedy’s national security advisor, and John McCone, President Kennedy’s director of the CIA. The Russian Research Center was set up to “carry out interdisciplinary study of Russian institutions, behavior and related subjects.”

One of the most important operations at the Center was the CIA sponsored refugee interview project, which “debriefed” émigrés from Communist Russia, Poland, Yugoslavia, Hungry, Rumania and East Germany, code-named Operation WRINGER. The Harvard Center worked closely with the West German Intelligence (BND), which was directed by former Nazi General Reinhard Gehlen. It was Gehlen who established and supervised WRINGER, attempting to penetrate the Soviet Union and reinforce his spy network inside Russia. Gehlen had been Hitler’s intelligence chief for the Nazi German “Armies East,” the Russian front. His files and network, turned over to the Americans at the end of the war, served as the foundation for the American CIA files and operations against the Soviets.

Priscilla Johnson began her book publishing career while at the Russian Research Center. Her first book, about the persecution of Russian writers, was published by MIT Press with the assistance of the Center for International Studies. In their book, The CIA and the Cult of Intelligence, Victor Marchetti and John Marks reveal that, “…in 1951, CIA money was used to set up the Center for International Studies at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.”

Max F. Millikan, then the Center’s director said, “The Center is a remarkable institution devoted to inquiry into current affairs of man, especially of American man and the multitude of new affairs that have pressed so hard and swiftly in upon him in these years.” Marchetti and Marks also note that, “In 1952, Max Millikan, who had been Director of the CIA’s Office of National Estimates, became the head of the Center….in 1953 the MIT Center published “The Dynamics of Soviet Society”…but there was no indication to the reader that the work had been financed by CIA funds.”

The Center actually published two versions of “Dynamics,” written by Walt Rostow. One version of Rostow’s book was for government policy makers and CIA readers and the other for the general public. According to “Cult of Intelligence,” the MIT Center also assisted Rostow in other ways. Rostow was a political scientist with intelligence ties that date back to his OSS service during World War II. Rostow went on to become an assistant for national security affairs under both Presidents Kennedy and Johnson. It is also interesting to note that Walt Rostow first recommended that he appoint a commission to investigate the assassination of President Kennedy.

In addition to Priscilla Johnson’s affiliation with the MIT CIS, Oswald’s cousin Dorothy Murret had a curious connection to the Institute. According to some Warren Commission and FBI documents Murret, “was linked in some manner with the …. apparatus of Professor Harold Isaacs.” Issacs was an MIT professor and CIS associate who had resided in China from 1931 to 1936 where he edited a local English language newspaper, The China Forum, and contributed to Newsweek and the Christian Science Monitor on Far Eastern affairs. Much of his work took him away from MIT, and it is possible he met Murret during the course of her travels.

Cult of Intelligence notes that the CIA “also used defectors from communist governments for propaganda purposes. These defectors…are immediately taken under the CIA’s control and subjected to extensive secret debriefings. The Agency encourages and will help the defector write articles and books about their past life.”

Even Priscilla’s family seems to have been involved in the tangle of Soviet émigrés, American spies and intelligence agency-run publishing efforts. One of the most important keys to the real history of Soviet leadership, Svetlana Stalin, the daughter of Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin, defected to the United States through India with the assistance of the CIA. Stalin had died mysteriously of a blood clot to the brain after being given drugs by his new doctors, drugs that were supplied by outside interests, possibly even the CIA.  
When Stalin’s daughter arrived in the United States, she was a prime candidate for debriefing and funneling through Operation WRINGER, and soon after her defection she was taken to the home of Stewart H. Johnson of Locust Valley, New York, Priscilla Johnson’s father. Priscilla then returned home and helped to translate Svetlana’s memoirs and two other books, including “Twenty Letters to a Friend,” which the CIA helped to publish.

After the murder of Oswald, Priscilla Johnson McMillan was one of the only writers allowed to have access to Oswald’s wife Marina, and she obtained the exclusive contract to write Marina’s story, for which they both got paid. That book, fifteen years in the making, was eventually published as Lee and Marina. As Marina’s friend, advisor and ghost writer, Priscilla communicated with and coached Marina’s testimony before the House Select Committee on Assassinations (HSCA) in 1978. 


Both the Warren Commission and Priscilla Johnson McMillan suggest, in their portrayals of Oswald, that he held the personal political beliefs of a communist, while actually associating with rich, right wing oil executives like George Bouhe, George DeMohrenschildt and Paul Ragoridsky in Dallas, and fanatic anti-Communists like Guy Banister, David Ferrie and Carlos Bringuier in New Orleans. 

From a military family, Oswald was determined to become a Marine like his older brother Robert. Another half-brother, Edward Pic served in the Coast Guard at New York harbor before enlisting in the Air Force.
Oswald’s favorite book and TV program, “I Led Three Lives,” by Herbert Philbrick, concerned an undercover FBI agent who infiltrated communist groups for a decade before exposing his true beliefs when testifying against his former friends in court.

It is possible that Oswald was recruited and trained for counter-intelligence work while serving as a Marine in Japan and California, possibly by the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI), the American intelligence agency that was reportedly responsible for a fake Soviet defector program that Oswald may have been a part of.
The circumstances of Oswald’s “defection” clearly suggest that he was sent as a military intelligence agent to penetrate the Soviet Union and test and monitor their response to his defection. In Russia, he became affiliated with another anti-communist network that included a similar “defector,” his factory foreman Alexander Ziegler and his family.

Ziegler, a Jewish émigré during World War II, left Argentina, where he had worked for an American company, and resettled in Byelorussia. Ziegler was Oswald’s nominal boss at the radio factory where they worked in Minsk, and he encouraged Oswald to marry Marina. When Oswald was ready to leave Russia, Ziegler reportedly gave him an envelope to smuggle to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, which was addressed to CIA director Allen Dulles.

Oswald once traveled to Moscow alone and met some American tourists, two young women and an older lady who had lost their official Intourist guide and were traveling unescorted around Russia. A few weeks later Oswald met the same trio in Minsk, and can be seen in a photo of them together, a photo that ended up in the files of the CIA.

Oswald applied to the US Embassy to leave the USSR in the same month that many other Office of Naval Intelligence “defectors” also returned. Marina Oswald, in her testimony to the Warren Commission about how Oswald came to Russia and where he lived gave the details of another ONI false defector instead, Robert Webster.

Eventually arriving in New York with his Russian wife and child, Oswald and his family were met by Spas T. Raiken of Traveler’s Aid. Raiken was also the secretary-treasurer of the American Friends of the Anti-Bolshvik Block of Nations, a CIA front group, part of the World Anti-Communist League and an arm of Operation WRINGER.


In the summer of ’63 Oswald became involved with both the Fair Play for Cuba Committee (FPCC) and the DRE – an anti-Castro Cuban student group, both of which were subjects covered by NARA reporter Virginia Prewett and monitored if not controlled by David Atlee Phillips, a CIA officer from Oswald’s old Fort Worth neighborhood.

Oswald was seen meeting with Phillips shortly before Oswald ostensibly went to Mexico City visiting the Cuban and Russian embassies monitored by Phillips’ surveillance teams.

Virginia Prewett was one of Phillips’ media assets who often wrote news articles in support of CIA operations. Prewett was interviewed by author Anthony Summers and British journalist David Leigh, and although Ben Bradlee of the Washington Post commissioned Leigh to write an article about Phillips and Prewett, Bradlee refused to publish it.

Summers reported that Prewett confirmed the existence of “Maurice Bishop” and his association with both David A. Phillips and Tony Veciana, one of the leaders of the anti-Castro Cuban Alpha 66 terrorist group, who had seen Oswald and “Bishop” together in Dallas. Prewett was also one of the founders of the Friends of Democratic Cuba, along with other associates and media assets of David Atlee Phillips. Many researcher believe that Maurice Bishop was a pseudonym used by David Phillips, and at least one former CIA operative has confirmed it.


“Goldberg” is one of the names Oswald wrote in his notebook while in the Soviet Union, and was ostensibly a Moscow correspondent he had met, and not either Sidney or Luci Goldberg, who worked for NANA.
One protagonist in George Orwell’s 1984, a favorite novel of Oswald’s, is Emmanuel Goldberg, the supposed Party traitor who writes the Book of Revolution.

When Bill Kelly talked with Sidney Goldberg on the phone, he said he knew Ian Fleming from working at NANA but that Fleming left the organization around the time [Goldberg] became affiliated with it in 1963.
“Alongside Goldberg’s possible acquaintance with confirmed CIA agent Seymour Freidin, her 1972 claim to be affiliated with the North American Newspaper Alliance takes on additional significance. NANA actually existed, but it was infested with CIA connections, as JFK assassination researchers eventually discovered. Priscilla Johnson McMillan, who had numerous CIA and State Department links, was working for NANA when she interviewed Lee Harvey Oswald in Moscow in 1959. Another NANA reporter, Virginia Prewett, was an anti-Castro activist recruited by NANA founder Ernest Cuneo, a high-ranking OSS veteran. In the mid-1960s, NANA was acquired by a partnership between Leonard Marks, Drew Pearson, and Fortune Pope. In 1952, Fortune Pope’s brother, Generoso Pope, Jr., bought the National Enquirer. The previous year Generoso was a CIA officer (according to Generoso’s listing in Who’s Who in America, 1984-85). Marks and Pearson were also friendly with the CIA.”

According to Frank Greve and Rod Hutcheson (Knight-Ridder/Tribute Information Service), Luci and Syd Goldberg were close personal friends and NANA colleagues with Victor Lasky.

“Victor Lasky, who died on February 22, 1990, was more than a simple right-wing columnist. From 1956-1960 he was a public relations executive for Radio Liberty, which was one of the CIA’s two largest propaganda operations at the time (the other was Radio Free Europe). Starting just two years later and continuing until 1980, the North American Newspaper Alliance distributed his syndicated column. It was revealed during Watergate testimony that Lasky was secretly paid $20,000 by Nixon’s Committee to Re-elect the President while he was writing his column. CREEP included a number of CIA operatives. In the mid-1980s, Lasky was close to CIA director William Casey.”

Lucianne and Sidney Goldberg were not only associated with NANA in regards to Oswald in the Soviet Union. Luci later posed as a reporter covering the McGovern campaign, while actually working as a “dirty trickster” for the Republicans. The Goldbergs were also mentioned in regards to the Eagleton scandal, which exposed the vice presidential candidate has having had psychological counseling.

From the San Francisco Chronicle, January 23, 1998: “In 1972, ([Lucianne]) Goldberg told the McGovern campaign that she worked for the North American Newspaper Alliance and later for Women’s News Service. The addresses she listed for both agencies then is the same as her current residence on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.”

Then Luci became entangled in the Monica Lewinski affair. It was Luci Goldberg who encouraged the Pentagon secretary Linda Tripp to secretly and illegally tape record Lewinski detailing her relationship with President Clinton. Lucianne Goldberg still identified herself as associated with NANA at that time. Her son, Jonah Goldberg continues in the tradition as a vehement right-wing propagandist, and somehow recently secured an exclusive interview with Fidel Castro.


With editors and correspondents like Ernest Hemingway, Ernest Cueno Ivor Bryce, Ian Fleming, and Syd Goldberg, and a bevy of young and beautiful correspondents like Inga Avid, Priscilla Johnson McMillan, Virginia Prewett and Luci Goldberg, the North American Newspaper Alliance – NANA was a fully functioning intelligence network closely associated with the CIA’s Operation Mockingbird.

As exemplified by the North American Newspaper Alliance (NASA), the corporate connection between the CIA and the US media is at the heart of the psychological warfare campaign that has portrayed Oswald variously as a Cuban or Soviet agent, deranged lone-nut or mob hit-man, rather than what he clearly was – an expendable agent for a domestic military-intelligence network. Oswald was an American spy and what ever his role in it, the assassination was not a foreign attack but “an inside job,” a coup.

Oswald used aliases, forged identity papers, post office boxes, pay phones, dead letter drops, and micro-dot photography. He was multi-lingual in Russian and English, and could converse in basic Japanese and Spanish. He traveled widely, primarily using public transportation, and was educated by a specialist in the crafts of intelligence practices and techniques. As they used to say in the fifties, if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s a duck. Oswald was a covert intelligence operator and agent for some domestic anti-communist network.

Lee Harvey Oswald went to Russia like Hemingway went to Paris in 1944 – not as a writer but as a war-time penetration agent operating behind the lines.

Set up as a patsy, Oswald’s presence at the scene of the murder of President Kennedy served as a message – that the murder of the President was not only a conspiracy, but a more specific covert intelligence operation designed to shield those actually responsible. It was a plot that originated within the heart of the federal government itself and showed that those who killed the President can get away with anything.
At a COPA conference on the assassination in Dallas in October 1992, a workshop panel on the role of the media in the assassination concluded that the most significant facts have not been the subject of news stories because of negligence on the part of the media.

Rather than negligence however, it is clear the mainstream media response to the assassination of President Kennedy can be shown to have been influenced if not entirely controlled by the CIA from the very moment of the assassination, and they did this through the utilization of their media assets, particularly those at Time-Life, CBS News and NANA – the North American Newspaper Alliance.